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Michigan State University has long been recognized as a premier institution for research and education in forensic science, and is home to a number of excellent resources for the study of forensic science. The School of Criminal Justice maintains modern laboratory facilities containing equipment and instrumentation for the analysis of virtually any type of physical evidence, from chromatography equipment for drugs, explosives, and arson evidence, to microscopy techniques for trace evidence analysis, to genetic analyzers for the analysis of DNA. The Forensic Science Masters program at Michigan State University is designed to give students a broad theoretical and practical background in the scientific, legal, and investigative aspects of forensic science while providing the opportunity to study one of the major disciplines in depth.

A Brief Overview of the Forensic Sciences at MSU



OSAC Representation

Three MSU Forensic Science faculty (Drs. Fenton, Foran, and Hefner), along with numerous MSU graduates, are members of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC), which are charged with setting best practice standards for all areas of forensic science. The entire OSAC met in Leesburg, VA in January 2016, and will next meet in Phoenix, AZ in August.

American Academy of Forensic Sciences Annual Meeting

Several Forensic Science Masters students and alumni presented papers and posters at the 68th Annual American Academy of Forensic Science in Las Vegas, Nevada. Congratulations on a successful conference!

Characterization of Synthetic Phenethylamines Using High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry. Alexandria Anstett, BS*; Fanny Chu, MS; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD

Differentiation of Cathinone Isomers Using High Resolution Collision-Induced Dissociation Mass Spectrometry (CID-MS). Cynthia Kaeser, BS*; A. Daniel Jones, PhD; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD

Differentiation of Commercial Ammunition Sources of Unburned and Corresponding Burned Smokeless Powders based on Chemical Composition using Mass Spectrometry and Principal Component Analysis (PCA). Kristen L. Reese, BA*; A. Daniel Jones, PhD; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD

Elemental Composition of Tattoo Inks as an Identification Tool. Trevor Curtis, BS*; John Buchweitz, PhD; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD

Mathematically Modeling Chromatograms of Evaporated Ignitable Liquids for Fire Debris Applications. Rebecca J. Brehe, BS; John W. McIlroy, PhD; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD*; Victoria L. McGuffin, PhD

Examining the Factors Affecting Forensic Scientists' Job Stress and Satisfaction. Thomas J. Holt, PhD*; Kristie R. Blevins, PhD; Ruth Waddell Smith, PhD; David R. Foran, PhD

Spatial Analysis on a Global Scale: Cranial Non-Metric Trait Variability. Joseph T. Hefner, PhD*; Caitlin C.M. Vogelsberg, MS

Missing Data Imputation Methods Using Morphoscopic Traits and Their Performance in the Estimation of Ancestry. Michael W. Kenyhercz, PhD*; Nicholas V. Passalacqua, PhD; Joseph T. Hefner, PhD

The Interpretation of Human Pediatric Cranial Fracture Patterns Using Experimentally Generated Porcine Ground-Truth Data. Jennifer M. Vollner, MS*; Caitlin C.M. Vogelsberg, MS; Patrick E. Vaughan, BS; Todd W. Fenton, PhD; Steven C. Clark, PhD; Roger C. Haut, PhD

Understanding the Role of Contact Area in Adult Cranial Fracture Variation. Mariyam I. Isa, BS*; Todd W. Fenton, PhD; Patrick E. Vaughan, BS; Roger C. Haut, PhD

*Presenting author



Current Events

Fall 2016 Commencement

Friday, December 16 at 3:30 p.m.
Jack Breslin Student Events Center
534 Birch Road
East Lansing, MI 48824

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AAFS 69th Annual Meeting

February 13-18, 2017
New Orleans, LA
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